asking for trouble

Goodbye 2018

The world is still terrible but I had a pretty marvellous year. Let’s have a look back.

kawaii bullet journal


I started the year by looking back at my Reading Challenge and setting some 2018 Plans & Goals (I have done surprisingly well with both this year). One was to start journaling so I shared My Bullet Journal Setup (this did not go so well). On the business side, I designed a New Logo and a set of 2018 Calendar Printable Bookmarks. And though I couldn’t talk about it, I finished writing my book!



In February, I fulfilled a lifelong dream and got a PO Box. I can confirm it has been as thrilling as I imagined and I’ve really enjoyed all the cute mail swaps. I added two New Enamel Pins to my shop, not knowing they’d be the last ever, and got a New Stockist: October31st. I was getting more comfortable drawing on my iPad and shared my Sister Portraits and My Tips For Procreate, iPad Pro & Apple Pencil.

surprise mail swap


March is my birthday month and March Meet The Maker, which I successfully completed again and encouraged me to write about How I Make My Little Ghost Brooches. I shared some plans for My Next Japan Trip as we’d just booked our flights and showed off the first packages from my Surprise Mail Swap.

Kawaii Skies cloud brooches


With my book publication pushed back to 2019, I decided to fill the time by taking part in the 100 Day Project with 100 Days of Kawaii Characters, which also led to lots of new patterns for my on-demand stores. New products included Kawaii Skies Gift Wrap & Cloud Brooches – both big sellers and I also shared new photos of My Home Studio.

GDPR padlock - copyright Marceline Smith


I was kept very busy in May with my 100 Day Project and the joys of GDPR compliancy but also shared some posts about designing repeat patterns including my Solar System, Mt Fuji & Bumblebees.

kawaii rainbow ghost brooches


June was a much bigger month, though it began with a lovely Summer Holiday Up North. I started two new blog series – Plan Your Japan Trip and 11 Years of Blogging – and added Rainbow Ghost Brooches to my shop. My biggest change was Moving Towards Eco-Friendly Packaging, which was a huge success, though I plan to take it even further in 2019.

kawaii wooden bumblebee garden decorations


July brought even bigger things as I started the Trouble Club on Patreon – it was a bit scary but I’ve enjoyed it so much. I turned my popular Postbox character into Happy Mail Stickers & Printables and unveiled the Wooden Bumblebee Garden Decorations I’d been working on with my dad, plus the story of my Ghost Padlock Protector. I also had a very enjoyable Heatwave Holiday when everyone came to visit me.

100 day project - marcelinesmith


In August, I completed my 100 Days of Kawaii Characters, only taking a few more weeks than the actual 100 days, and revealed The Favourites and The Losers. I shared How We Made The Wooden Bumblebees and added New Keyrings to my shop. I also found time to fulfil another long-time wish with A Trip on the Waverley Paddle Steamer.

The Super Cute Book of Kawaii


September was very exciting as Super Cute Kawaii was 10 Years Old and I was allowed to announce that I Wrote A Book! The Super Cute Book of Kawaii – I can’t wait for it to come out in July. I also shared What I Learned From The 100 Day Project and a New Zines Preview and added the very popular Holographic Ghost Stickers to my shop.

kawaii wooden pins


October is always a favourite month because of Halloween but I was also heading to Japan and shared Our Japan Itinerary and some Packing tips. I designed my 2019 Tea Towel Calendar, organised the first Custom Stamps Week and updated my shop with Wooden Pins + Surprise Boxes and a New Japan Zine.


The first week of November was spent in Japan and I shared a Japan Trip Video and some quick recaps when we returned. Sometime in my jetlag haze I updated my 2019 Calendars & Diaries and shared the Terrarium Ghost painting I made for an Art Auction (my dad won it!).

kawaii washi tape


I started December with another successful day at Etsy Made Local Glasgow including a vase of DIY Felt Flowers that I made from a kit for my display. My final product of the year was another long-time dream (2018 was really good for those!) as I designed Kawaii Washi Tape and I also created some Printable Christmas Gift Tags for my Patreon and a tutorial for my DIY Pom Pom Snowman. I finished off the year with some Trouble Awards and headed up north for a fun Christmas.

Big thanks to everyone who bought my products, read my blog, joined my Patreon and interacted on social media. I wouldn’t be able to do so many fun things without you. Hope we all have a great 2019!


Hello! I’m Marceline Smith, the designer and owner of Asking For Trouble. I create illustrated stationery, accessories and gifts using my cute characters inspired by Japanese kawaii. This is my business and personal blog where I write about my creative doings, inspirations, travels, Japan trips and daily life. Read more »

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All text, photos and illustrations are © Marceline Smith 2007-2024 unless credited otherwise. You may repost my images with full credit and link. However, do not reproduce full posts without my permission or use my images or writing for commercial purposes. Thank you!


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